Mona Kochendorfer

Dutch Hindeloopen Butte

Dutch Hindeloopen Butte

Art became important in Mona’s life before she entered kindergarten; she has fond memories of her father teaching her to make simple drawings of animals, people, and flowers. Although there was no formal art instruction in school, teachers encouraged Mona’s love of art by entering her work in contests and exhibitions. A kind neighbor introduced her to Norwegian Rosemaling when she was a teenager; this was the beginning of her journey in the world of ethnic painting. She completed undergraduate and graduate work in art education, fine art, and art history at the U.W. During the ensuing years she continued the study of ethnic painting and decorative painting with respected teachers in Europe and the U.S.

Mona has been an art supervisor and teacher in Wisconsin Public Schools, and a teacher in Wisconsin Technical Colleges. She has presented seminars for businesses and organizations, and has taught at national conventions of the Society of Decorative Painters. Her work has been featured in international publications and included in national exhibits. At the request of Plaid Enterprises she authored the book Hindeloopen Sampler, which presents traditional Dutch folk painting. She received four grants from the Wisconsin Arts Board, and is one of the visual artists included on the WAB website.

“People often ask which medium I like best. That is a difficult question: each has its own special qualities. When painting realistic floral compositions and landscapes, I love blending with oils, and the feeling they have when flowing from my brushes. Acrylics are wonderful when I undercoat traditional folk art motifs, and then apply shadows and highlights with brush strokes. Transparent watercolor washes allow me to achieve depth, highlighting and shading with a single vibrant color.”